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 2: ACROSS THE PLAINS OF AZANULBIZAR

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Tiphereth

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PostSubject: Re: 2: ACROSS THE PLAINS OF AZANULBIZAR   Fri Dec 11, 2009 10:57 am



Sorrelwind continued to examine the artistry about them. In truth his examinations had been completed but he wanted to give the druid his privacy and in no way did want the revered man to consider that a being of his kind influenced him. In his world a Phaerie did not speak so plainly with a druid, but Augustine was inviting and so for a moment he forgot himself. So long had it been since the Deithirin had walked among his own kind that he had become more 'Human' in the way he thought.

The tall man sat silently while the druid shed his burdens. While his thoughts returned to happier times, Sorrelwind could smell the fresh earth beneath the feet of the druids. A mild wind stirred vibrant leaves and when the druid spoke of Autumn, the talisquetric symbols upon the Phaerie's face that were of leaves began to tumble across his cheek. The images moved as if caught in a wind and the Phaerie remembered his time at the temple. The halls were nestled within a forest of perpetual autumn, the broad leaved trees growing on a high mountain top, an impossibility in the world he currently resided within. A canopy of blazing colours forever danced above the ornate buildings and Sorrelwind smiled as he remembered preventing to one falling leaf from touching the stones of the grand square for the entire day. His master had awaited the cycle of 'The Fall' for this task and how surprised he had been to learn just how many leaves a single tree could hold. Sorrelwind smiled as he mused at the memory.

"The pallbearer of Summer." The Phaerie responded absent mindedly, "Those that see Winter as death speak of it so, but such is not the truth is it Augustine? The white season is but a long slumber and the trees shall spring to life once more... in time... so too shall Ssinjin. Shed thy tears. The sadness that drains from your eyes nurtures those loved ones who have passed before us..."

The Bardic Phaerie's words trailed off even though he seemed to have more to say. He raised his head and looked upward, pondering some thought and was silent.
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PostSubject: Re: 2: ACROSS THE PLAINS OF AZANULBIZAR   Fri Dec 11, 2009 7:16 pm



Augustine continued to sit, the chamber seemed so quiet when no one moved about. The black faces of the statues stared at the druid blankly. Augustine opened his eyes, the first thing he saw was the shattered stone fragment on the floor near him.

"If I could but reverse time I would restore this." The druid picked up a piece and held it in his hand, it was cold and heavy for a small thing. He stood and looked down at the scattered pieces, they were the only things out of place in the vast chamber. Augustine gathered the other fragments, he held them in his hands and walked to one of the grave chambers. He placed each piece gently against the smooth sarcophagus.
Augustine did this with all but one of the smaller pieces, out of sight (if there is such a thing when it comes to a Deithir being) of the Pharie Augustine slipped the small fragment into his robe.

There was no malice in Augustine keeping the fragment, the druid wanted to have it to remind him of the consequences of pain and fear, the consequences of allowing hatred to take root.

"I shall never forget this place." Augustine said, his back still to Tiphereth.

"What is done for your kind when one meets with death Tiphereth?" He asked the Pharie as he turned to face him again, his voice sounding a little lighter even though the question was a tad morbid. But what better place to speak on the subject of death then before these graves.

"I have heard that if a Drow is slain beyond the borders of Underdark that they will not leave the dead behind, they will carry the remains of their dead all the way back home. It is of great importance to them to return home, even in death."
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PostSubject: Re: 2: ACROSS THE PLAINS OF AZANULBIZAR   Sat Dec 12, 2009 12:43 am



Sorrelwind admired the practice of the Drow to collect their fallen. He had observed through his many years that those beings conscious of their end believed in preserving and commemorating the remains. He contemplated his own end quite often and as the druid attempted to further understand his kind and slight smile curled the side of his deep red lips.

"You should know, Augustine that I grew up not unlike any other of your world. My parents were Aethiad, a people not so unlike your own, but they each bore a line of Deithirin blood. Once in a while the child of those descended from a Phaerie people yields a child of that kind. No Aidral arrived to present an Aethiad baby to my parents, but instead the messenger of the Phaerie came and guided them into the forest where I lay. They could have left me die there, but despite my origins they loved me and so I grew within a world few of my kind ever knew. But that is another story."

The Deithir smiled warmly, an uncharacteristic gesture and as he approached the druid removed one of his gloves. He then produced a knife from his belt; the silver blade shimmering in the blue light, and with one quick motion ran it across the back of his wrist. The blood as red as any ebbed and flowed, spilling to the floor, the crimson droplets spreading out into tiny black pools in the blue tinted light.

"Watch." said Sorrelwind, and in the short time that Human blood took to coagulate, his own began a strange metamorphosis. It began to pale, turning white, resembling the consistency of ash. Bending down then, the outlander waved his hand over the drops and the light wind scattered what remained into the air.

"My kind shall endure for all time, Augustine, but this vessel," Sorrelwind tapped his chest, "succumbs to injury as your own and when at last I fall, all that shall remain will scatter to the winds or wash away with the rain. Nothing physical remains of what we were, and so the Phaerie lament the fallen by telling their song, a collection of thoughts that linger for a time. What we refer to as the 'Life song'."

Sorrelwind walked to a Drow statue and ran his finger along the exquisite jaw line. "The Deithir and Daeyel people, however, do craft such things to remember those who have fallen. Like these Drow, it is important to my kind to create memorials so that the memory of them is not scattered like their bodies. Such is an undertaking for family and close friends." he said somberly as he turned away from the monument.

"Let us leave this place, Augustine." Requested, Sorrelwind.

The druid and the outlander made their way out of the catacombs and continued down the passage that followed the passing of the Drow before them. Tiphereth had a sense of their presence, but could not know for sure whether or not they awaited in ambush. He only knew to be cautious, and so he prepared for the worst, moving silently and remaining wary.
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PostSubject: Re: 2: ACROSS THE PLAINS OF AZANULBIZAR   Sat Dec 12, 2009 8:36 am

As Lac'Nala, Othargren and Brianna made their way deeper into forest, the ground leveled ands the trees seem to close in around them as the light was filtered and subdued. The air became moist and close, soft groans and creaks could be heard faintly. As occasional squirrel scampered along the low hanging branches. Faintly Lac heard a long moanful howl off to the south, another answered to the north followed by another to the east. Suddenly a familiar form rose over a fallen tree trunk. There standing before them was Shape raising his snout to answer the calls.

"It is good to see you my old friend." Lac said as he knelt and Shape padded across the forest floor to nuzzle his cheek. Lac hug the wolfs massive head and scratched behind his ear. He the rose and looked at the others "We have escorts to help us along our way." A low groan seemed to drift through the surrounding trees. Shape's hair rose, a soft growl eminated from deep within him, as Lac rose looked out into the forest and slowly rested his hand on the pummel of his sword.
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PostSubject: Re: 2: ACROSS THE PLAINS OF AZANULBIZAR   Sat Dec 12, 2009 11:05 am

Brianna smiled upon seeing Shape. She'd always held and affection for creature of the forests, but especially the wolves. It was good to see the animal alive and well and she sighed when she saw the large canine nuzzle Lac's cheek. She'd remembered seeing the horses of her village do the same with their riders, one rider in particular, but never with her. She wasn't of their kind, even though she'd been raised by them and the horses sensed this. She remembered after meeting with Lac and his group, one of them saying something about her being a Duidan. Every so often she'd wondered what this meant and what exactly that made her. Her adopted parents had only told her that everyone had thought her race lost and were amazed when at 3 years old, she'd been brought into their village for her dark hair and forest green eyes along with her build spoke volumes to the Rhorrihm and even though her life had not been easy, being different from the rest, they had, the adults anyway, treated her as some sort of treasure. She would learn more, this she knew, but now was not the time.

Hearing the groan just as Lac laid his hand on the pommel of his sword, Brianna did the same, turning a slow circle to look for anything out of place. The hairs on the back of her neck stood up and her sharp eyes kept looking into the trees.

"Maybe we should keep moving, but stay completely alert. I would feel much better once we out of this place. I like being admist the trees, but I do not think that was a tree we just heard."

Brianna's voice was a mere whisper, not wanting to draw any undo attention to themselves. She watched Shape as well, knowing that the wolf would alert them quicker than they would sense anything.

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PostSubject: Re: 2: ACROSS THE PLAINS OF AZANULBIZAR   Sat Dec 12, 2009 5:05 pm



Othargren patted the powerful neck of his great black ram and reassured the beast when the wolf came into sight. "Ye scared o' that wee pup!" the Dwarf scoffed with a warm hearted chuckle, the ram snorted loudly in response and bowed it's head defensively but little else.

The strangle creaking groans persisted through the ancient forest, seeming to echo all around them. The Dwarf grasped his axe tightly allowing the cool metal in his hand to calm his nerves. His eyes searched through the dense and tangled forest and for moment he caught sight of something moving but when he focused found it only to be a ghostly birch tree.



"Lac'Nal," called the Dwarf, "Is there no other route we can take? Fangorn forest can be deadly, d'ya know the tales? Strange creatures walk these woods, Ents they are called but there be other more dangerous forms of their kind. I saw them once, Huorns they called them — moving trees. Things that are believed to have once been like the Ents but are now more tree. They are more inclined to attack than speak like their cousins. I trust neither of them, though and would myself rather avoid them."

The Dwarf twisted round. "I think I may have seen a path back there that would take us out o' this wood.", he mentioned knowing that the ranger would only vote against going back, but he had to give it a try nonetheless. He actually had no idea where that trail was anyway, then he feared that maybe the forest swallowed it up and they were next.
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PostSubject: Re: 2: ACROSS THE PLAINS OF AZANULBIZAR   Tue Dec 15, 2009 2:58 pm

Jin felt as though she were a snail on a slippery slope. If she tried to move faster, she would reveal her presence. If she didn’t move fast enough, she wouldn’t meet the place she was supposed to be at the right time and quite possibly cause a different outcome and therefore tip the balance unfavorably. She simply couldn’t allow that to happen.

The closer she got to that most sacred of places yet the most dreaded for her, she thought she heard voices speaking quietly. Stopping and tilting her head, Jin tried to listen closer to see if that were the case of if it was just the air moving through the vast cavernous dwelling. There…she DID hear voices. Voices she was certain were….familiar. But who was down here and why? Didn’t they realize how much danger they were in?

Another thought gripped her heart then and Jin stopped her forward progress once more. What if it were a foe and no a friend she was encountering. And down here, that left a wide variety of foes it could be. No doubt her brother had spread lie after filthy lie about her to their people and there was quite the price on her head. It could be a squad of assassins. Or maybe just two. Either way it didn’t bode well for her to meet up with them…here…of all places.

No. That couldn’t be for even Drow held some things scared and dared not break those rules. The burial grounds were no place for confrontation. It was a place to pay respects. Even your enemies came to say their last goodbyes here and dared not do anything against your family for fear of the Goddess’ wrath for violating a place made to be a sanctuary.

Jin moved along looking like a sleek feline. Each step she took was calculated and precise. No sound was made as she nimbly slithered along the rocks and stalagmites that were all around the area. When she came upon the rear of the burial grounds, she took the time to move about the carved figures of obsidian and remembered each one by name. Especially her own Mother and sisters. They were the newest additions to the sarcophagi’s. So fresh the dust had not had time to settle on their polished surfaces. Her gloved fingers lovingly eased over the smooth surfaces she could reach as she tried to dwell on the moments of peace she had with each one. While there was always strife, there were moments when it didn’t seem to come into play with them and it was those times Jin chose to remember.

But enough of that. The gentle currents of air that moved through the burial ground brought familiar scents. As she took in those scents, a small smile tugged at the corners of her mouth. Hopefully they wouldn’t be too surprised by her presence. Then again, it may take them a few moments to realize who she is. Recognition would be slow now with the changes in her appearance. Eventually they would see it was her, but those first few moments were going to be tense indeed.

She was just getting ready to leave when she noticed something on the far wall. Narrowing her eyes, she took a more intense look. The signature outline of the markings were like beacons to her. HE had been here and he had disgraced his sacred area with his misplaced magic! How DARE HE!!!??? The anger that flowed through Jin felt like hot lava coursing through her veins. This was the last straw. When the Elders discovered his blasphemy here, he would never be able to return to the city. He would rule nothing now.

Another sobering thought brought Jin out of her anger induced thoughts. He was watching. He was WATCHING. HE WAS WATCHING!!!! As swift as a barn swallow, Jin quickly made her way into the passage she knew the others had just taken for their scent was strongest from this direction. Hopefully she would reach them before they reached Verin for knowing that bastard the way she did, he wasn’t alone.

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PostSubject: Re: 2: ACROSS THE PLAINS OF AZANULBIZAR   Tue Dec 15, 2009 7:29 pm



Augustine walked the narrow passage with Tiphereth, it was very narrow and extremely dark, the Pharie lantern almost seemed to be struggling against the gloom. Augustine's head was clear and he was calm, dread was pushing into his heart but he focused his energy and fought it off even in the dark depths of the drow passages.

The druid walked quietly, both he and the Phariekin were listening for anything that seemed loud enough to be a threat. As Augustine walked he could sense the growing things in the passages and caverns. There were varied sizes of mushrooms that grew everywhere, rare mosses and lichens that creeped over moist rock, and in a few places there were dangerous tangle vine plants that waited for a victim to pass by.

Augustine strained his eyes in the blue light of the small lantern, speaking the words that Tiphereth had taught him the lantern burned brighter. With the lantern burning so bright there was much to see. The passages had been dug by Dwarves and every 30 yards or so there was a beautiful Dwarven arch holding up the passageway. Between these arches the Drow had etched and scribed directly into the stone of the passage walls. Their spider-goddess glared at the druid and the Phariekin from glyphs on the dark walls.

"Only the foolish ignore the warnings of these glyphs and continue..." The druid said with a sly smile.

The passage was beginning to grow somewhat wider as they walked on.
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PostSubject: Re: 2: ACROSS THE PLAINS OF AZANULBIZAR   Tue Dec 15, 2009 10:10 pm



Sorrelwind marveled at the Dwarven engineering. Truth be told he preferred their craftsmanship to his own people's. Their architecture boasted of power and strength but also nobility and their intricate carvings always told a tale, stories that the Bard could read and knew well for they were people that existed within his lands as well. While the mythology of their creation was no doubt different they were the same in every other way, even their languages had similarities allowing Tiphereth to decipher the runes that adorned the archways.

"These beautiful arches pay homage to those who crafted them." Said the Phaerie, his blackened eyes staring in no particular direction that could be easily discerned. "There are other names as well. Names of Kings and heroes, for the Dwarves believe that these powerful names add their strength to the stone."

As the passage widened, the Deithir casually moved down a passage to their left, encouraging the druid to follow. For a brief moment, Tiphereth turned and stared at Augustine, his eyes immediately turning from black to a luminescent lavender in the direct light of the lantern. It was an imperceptible gesture, but one that the Phaeire knew the wise druid would already know to be an uncharacteristic reaction on his part and as Augustine's mind became aware of the hidden message, their minds touched. A flash of single thought relayed from the Phaerie to the druid, the image of the passage behind them and an unmistakable feeling of danger accompanied it. Such was the way, that Sorrelwind's kind could communicate without sound or gesture. A limited form of communication but one that did not betray position or provided hint of intention.

Through the archway was a chamber with no exits, but then the Phaerie was not seeking to escape. At it's center, was a large stone fire plance, the chimney rising up through the arched ceiling, providing the concealment that Sorrelwind sought. He quickly touched the lantern in Augustine's hand and the heatless light went off, then he positioned the druid behind him, for reasons that he was unable to explain while they maintained silence, but it was because he had to countermand the infravision possessed by the Drow. His flesh was cool, unlike the warm blooded Human, and though he radiated more heat that the stones about them, he knew from his experience with other subterranean creatures that he was difficult to see. His cool skin was no more noticeable to those possessed of heat vision than a silent deer in the forest was at twilight. If he remained still, the could take by surprise whatever he felt was lurking in the darkness.
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PostSubject: Re: 2: ACROSS THE PLAINS OF AZANULBIZAR   Wed Dec 16, 2009 9:43 am



Lac took his hand away from the pummel of his sword, looked at Othargren and said softly "Lower your ax Master Dwarf. This forest is old and has many memories. There is but one way we must travel to reach the gates and our friends. The groans you here are but the voices of the trees as they speak to each other." Lac then led Othargren and Breanna deeper into the forest. Lac had thought the presence he felt had been Shape and the wolves, bu the could not shake the feeling there was another colse. They were being watched and not just by the forest.
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PostSubject: Re: 2: ACROSS THE PLAINS OF AZANULBIZAR   Wed Dec 16, 2009 10:39 am

Jin crept along silently, moving as though she were floating on air. The cloak she wore made no sound as it shrouded her body yet moved as one with her. Her soft booted feet stepped silently as she made her way into the narrow passage way the others had taken. She knew she was going the correct way for she could see the tell tale signs of where one of them had stepped. As faint as the outline of his feet were, she could still see them. But the other….she could not detect yet she knew he was here. In fact she could see the glow of the lantern one carried, especially when it began to glow brighter.

The passage way began to widen and Jin could see the Dwarven archways that had been carved all those years ago yet seemed to be as new as the day. Her eyes also saw the work her people had done and she knew the messages they left behind. If any one else could read the words that had been inscribed into the stone, they would have turned back and never tried to move onward past them.

When the light ahead of her was extinguished, Jin instantly felt a prickle of warning run the length of her spine. She hadn’t heard anything that would indicate the travelers had been caught by a patrol and dispatched. Still, Drow Death Squads could be quite efficient and quiet so she dared not take the chance.

Sliding a gloved hand beneath her cloak, Jin’s fingers on her left hand curled around the hilt of one of her larger daggers while the fingers of her right hand curled around a smaller, throwing dagger in preparation for what may be to come. When she entered the place where it widened, Jin let her subterranean sight cast around the area. Again she could see the faint foot print signature of one but the other remained obscure.

Their scent was strong here. Jin knew they were close or were not the far ahead of her now. Her eyes drifted over the area and she cast her gaze upward as she saw the chimney stretching high into the cavern. With another glance around, the Drowess began to move cautiously through the area trying to follow the foot steps that appeared on the ground but even that was becoming impossible as the signature was fading away each second.

Finally she stopped near the chimney as the trail grew cold. Where could they have gone? Jin knew she didn’t feel the current of magic that would have been used to port them out of this place. Besides, why would they wait until now to do that when they could have done it earlier? No. They’re still here. Somewhere.

That’s when she saw it. Catching a glimpse of a signature out the corner of her eye, Jin turned her head to look in the direction she saw it when she saw a movement that caused the signature she did see to be blocked. Having just enough time to jump out of the way of the spear that was coming her way, the Drowess dodged Tiphereth’s lunge, barely.

Her hood still up over her head and concealing her features, she knew the Pharie couldn’t see into the obsidian darkness of her cowl to see her clearly for if he could, he would see a pleased smile upon her face. Instead, all he could see were red eyes glowing brightly as they peered out at him from the depths of the hood.

Again he went on the offensive and Jin deflected his blows using the large dagger she had in her left hand. The smaller dagger had been left where it was when she realized who her opponent was for she didn’t wish to take the chance of nicking him and causing the poison to flow through his veins. She wasn’t sure what, if any, affect it would have on him and she dared not take the risk.

The Pharie and Drowess seemed to dance with each other as they moved about the open space of the cavern with deadly precision. It was difficult to tell who the offensive was and who the defensive was. It was like watching a well choreographed ballet of the deadliest kind. Twisting, turning, whirling, thrusting, jabbing, swinging and ducking, the two beings came together and parted ways. Tiphereth seemed to dwarf the Drowess and yet she stood her ground without giving an inch for quarter. It seemed as though there was no end to the deadly dance the two found themselves in and as Augustine observed from where he stood, he would notice something familiar about the Pharie’s opponent. Why was that?

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PostSubject: Re: 2: ACROSS THE PLAINS OF AZANULBIZAR   Wed Dec 16, 2009 11:02 am

Jalisa made the trip and when she landed, she was quite invigorated yet quite exhausted as well. She had just enough time to catch a quick nap before she caught the scent of warm blooded food on the air currents. Lifting her head she sniffed the air again and realized there was more to the scent than just the goat she could smell. There were humans with it.

Rising and taking to the air, the dragon flew overhead in the darkness thankful for the cloud cover making it near impossible for her to be seen. It didn’t take Jalisa long to find the group and as she circled over head saw it consisted of a tall man, a female and a Dwarf. This had to be the man Loki had told her about.

Returning to her hiding place, the large black dragon landed then used her unique abilities to transform into a humanoid form. She chose an elf so that way if she used magic, it would not seem that out of place. Of course Jalisa hoped she wouldn’t have to but one never knew in these times.

Her human clothing in place, which she wore a black tunic, black leggings tucked into black, soft boots and a black cloak, she waited patiently for the travelers to arrive. Remaining obscured by the thick vegetation of the forest around her, Jalisa’s eyes watched intently. When the groans filled the air and the man and dwarf prepared to engage in an enemy, Jalisa’s eyes glanced all around to see what might have been making the noise. When she looked back and saw the man taking his hand away from his sword hilt and telling the dwarf it was but the trees, Jalisa’s left brow rose in curiosity. He may have spoken one thing, but his eyes and his body language spoke something else. He was not as dumb as he appeared. No wonder Loki took a liking to this man.

It was time. Time for Jalisa to reveal herself and perhaps join with them. If she was refused companionship, she would simply remain with them in her true form yet unseen by them until the time was right. As the travelers walked a little further on, Jalisa stepped out into the pathway behind them and called out.

”Ho travelers! Might there be room for one more in your troupe? I wish to pass through Fangor but to do so alone is…well….not advisable. Don’t you agree?”

When the group turned around they would see a lone woman smiling warmly at them dressed all in black and wearing a black cloak. She was of average height with black hair and ivory colored skin. But it was her eyes that seemed to stand out most. They were blue but there was something about them that made them…unique.


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PostSubject: Re: 2: ACROSS THE PLAINS OF AZANULBIZAR   Wed Dec 16, 2009 8:22 pm



Two of Verin's warriors walked slowly to the mouth of the chamber, they walked in total darkness and were almost completely silent as they entered the large area. A few hundred feet in front of them was an ancient fire ring with a chimney shaft above running high up into the roof of the chamber. The Drow males watched the darkness their famous vision would certainly detect any heat, their sensitive ears heard the sound of blades clashing, it was subtle but it could be heard. Scanning the chamber they could see the lone heat signature of Augustine standing alone near the fire ring, he was all the way on the opposite side from them, they made note of his position.

They moved silently around the huge fire ring they could hear the fighting more clearly now. They quickly backed out of the chamber and went back the way they came. They made haste down a long corridor and back to Verin and the group and reported what they had found in the darkness.

"It is time to take action, you six go now.'
Verin motioned to the waiting Drow, six of them obediently broke away and slinked down the pitch black corridor to the fire room. They entered the large chamber and spread out -but not too much for the Drow stay close to one another in combat. The six rounded the large fireplace and listened for the Pharie and whoever he had been fighting. They could not see Tiphereth and his opponent, but they could see Augustine. The druid was still a ways away from them, on the far side of the ring.

Silent hands gripped daggers and two Drow carried small crossbows as they crept closer to the druid.
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PostSubject: Re: 2: ACROSS THE PLAINS OF AZANULBIZAR   Wed Dec 16, 2009 9:52 pm



The long blade of Tiphereth's spear had yet remained wooden. He saw no reason to slay his opponent, especially one that fought with such grace and so his edges remained dull. Never before he had fought a Drow, let alone a Drowess as it came to his attention whilest leaping over a vicious lunging attack that his opponent was female.

She fought well against his graceful fighting style. 'The Dance of Leaves', it was called. A passive martial art, intended to overwhelm an opponent, not the most effective style against the Drowess, but then he was learning. He had never fought her kind before and sought the perfect style to counter her. It was only when her comrades scurried into the chamber that the Phaerie knew that the time for study was over and it was time to adapt and conquer.

In the black of the chamber, his Deithirin eyes saw the world in mono-chromatic clarity. Finer details were lost, but he caught a glimpse of one of the Drow warriors moving silently behind the low wall of the fire pit. Leaping high into the air, away from his opponent, the Phaerie paused in the air. He floated upon a conjured wind, hovering and surveying the chamber, then he spied more of the assassins.

"Augustine! Take care!" he called out, alerting the man to danger, "Conjure the fire!" he cried out as he began to slowly descend.

Holding his spear above his head, the blade began to shimmer as it turned to highly reflective blueish coloured metal, the edges razor sharp. As he neared the ground he whispered arcane words and the spear began to glow, then burst into radient white light, so bright that it illuminated the entire chamber. The light was brief, but it's blinding effects would linger far longer in the eyes of the Drow than Augustine's human vision, giving him the time he needed to react and allowing Sorrelwind to land safely.
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PostSubject: Re: 2: ACROSS THE PLAINS OF AZANULBIZAR   Wed Dec 16, 2009 10:53 pm



Augustine threw his hood back as Tiphereth's spear lit a good portion of the chamber. The druid ran to the edge of the fire ring, his hands went to work brushing away centuries of soot. The Dwarves always had Elvish runes inscribed on their hearths, and any that could find and read the script would be rewarded with a great roaring fire. Augustine worked the smooth stone edges with his hands.

"They must be here somewhere...' The druid huffed.

He walked quickly away from the Drow around the fire ring, his hands feeling along the stone edge. At last he felt sharp angled symbols etched in the stone. He cleared the soot and grime as best he could and read the words aloud.

A great fire jumped to life in the cold damp fire pit. The flames were huge, filling up the center of the grand fireplace. The light from the flames spread throughout the chamber.

Between that and the blue light from the Phariekin's spear moments before the Drow had lost a great deal of their element of surprise.

The six dark elves drew closer together as they covered their eyes, they crouched low still holding their weapons as they waited for their eyes to adjust.

The two with the crossbows let loose with some bolts, they came very near Tiphereth and the mysterious figure near him. They quickly reloaded their crossbows and listened for targets.
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PostSubject: Re: 2: ACROSS THE PLAINS OF AZANULBIZAR   Wed Dec 16, 2009 11:41 pm



Tiphereth returned his weight and fell quickly to the ground with his eyes closed tightly. As his feet touched the stoney ground, his ears detected the whistling sound of the bolt that very nearly struck his leg. 'So close even when blinded', he considered and decided that the crossbowmen would have to be dealt with, but that was easier said than done.

By the amber glow of the great Dwarven fire, the Deithir's softly glowing eyes were at their best. All of the chamber was revealed to him in vivid colour and the black Elves were a stark contrast against the golden floor and walls. Sorrelwind could see that the the four swordsmen offered protection to their shooters and so they would have to contend with missiles as well as blades. First, however, he had to deal with the Drowess and so he turned to his opponent once more, thrusting his gleaming spear toward her. It was then that he saw the face within the cowl, the familiar ebon features revealed to him in the flickering fire light.

"Jin?"
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PostSubject: Re: 2: ACROSS THE PLAINS OF AZANULBIZAR   Thu Dec 17, 2009 9:43 am

Jin could have parried thrusts with Tiphereth for hours on end. The way he fought against her was superb and she found herself learning how to dodge and duck a lot of his moves. It wasn’t lost to her that his spear end had yet to get the sharp metal edge to it that would make it dangerous. If she had been of her old ways, she would have killed him outright, but she was no longer that woman.

Her eyes and heart had been opened to a different world. One she found more suitable to her own beliefs, despite the fact she was trained to be the opposite. While she excelled in everything she was tasked, she always found herself thinking there was something else that made her feel less empty. And now, after the murder of her Mother and sisters, she found out exactly what that was.

But when Tiphereth abandoned the dance with her and yelled out a warning to Augustine, Jin quickly whirled about to see what the Pharie saw. Cursing beneath her breath at what she was seeing, the Drowess knew now why the being had urged her onward after such a short healing time. These warriors would no doubt wear Verin’s crest if she were to get a closer look.

Jin’s first concern was Augustine. If her brother got his hands on him her dear friend would pay a hefty price and she wasn’t about to let that happen. So as the tip of Tiphereth’s spear began to glow, she turned away from it and closed her eyes knowing what was coming next. Hearing the agonized yells of the other Drow, she was glad she had the mind set to protect her sensitive, subterranean eyes from the flash.

By the time the light faded and she opened her eyes, Jin whirled about to see Augustine near the fire pit. The familiar sound of the bolts being fired from the cross bows didn’t give her much time to react and out of instinct she dropped to the stone floor but she still felt one of the bolts tug her cloak. That was too close, she thought.

Quickly getting to her feet, Jin heard Augustine’s voice as he started the fire that would illuminate the chamber. This would give Tiphereth and Augustine an advantage but it would also allow them to be seen clearly as well. She was just getting ready to take up a defensive stance near Augustine when the Pharie thrust his gleaming weapon her direction, causing her to take a step back and protect her eyes. When she heard her name whispered on his lips, she nodded.

”Yes…now get that thing out of my face and aim it at your true enemy.”

Hearing the crossbows snap once more Jin knew she had little time to react. Jumping before Augustine, she placed herself between the Druid and the bolts. Whispering words in her native language, she heard the bolts strike her cloak that had turned into a solid mass. When she landed on the ground in front of Augustine, her cloak was once more a free, flowing material and she scrambled to her feet as she pulled her own cross bow out and took aim, yelling at Augustine over her shoulder.

”Now would be a good time for you to prove just how powerful you are, Augustiine! Call upon the vegetation around you for aid! Tiphereth and I will protect you!”


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PostSubject: Re: 2: ACROSS THE PLAINS OF AZANULBIZAR   Thu Dec 17, 2009 10:15 am



The Drowess was a streak of dark as she crossed the room to stand at Augustine's side, while the Phaerie slowly approached the Drow. As Jin quickly moved to shield the druid, Tiphereth moved to the other side of the group, drawing as many eyes as possible from the powerful spell-caster. Divide and conquer was the idea, but the Drow instinctively stayed together, the crossbowmen in the middle, two swordsmen each facing their opponents in a classic defensive posture.

The crossbowman loosed his bolt. The Phaerie's eyes tracked it in flight, time slowing around him. As the deadly missile flew straight and true toward his throat he heaved his spear up, bending time itself, moving faster than normal to push it away.

A hint of fear crossed the face of the dead-eye Drow when his perfect shot was parried away with what appeared to be but a simple motion of the Phaerie's wrist. The bolt deflected off of the gleaming spear and struck the wall behind him.

Sorrelwind lowered his head, his glowing eyes staring defiantly at his adversaries as he pointed his spear toward them, daring one if not all, to face him in combat. They stood together, however, trained to never divide they hesitated. They gauged the strength of their foes, deciding which to attack first. Should they face the Drowess and kill the druid, or deal with the Phaerie and reduce their number? Either way, Tiphereth did not care, all that mattered was that they continued to stall while the druid prepared his magic.
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PostSubject: Re: 2: ACROSS THE PLAINS OF AZANULBIZAR   Thu Dec 17, 2009 11:59 am


Augustine's mind searched the large chamber for a connection, precious seconds passed and the druid found what he was hoping for.

At the feet of the 6 Drow small yellow spheres were pushing up from the hard stone and soil, a rare and dangerous fungus was sprouting in an instant. Dozens of the mustard colored blobs appeared, they grew quickly to the size of a fist. When they reached this size they split open and coughed forth a yellow dust that drifted into the faces of the Drow warriors.

Most of the dark elves breathed the noxious dust, they coughed and gagged covering their mouths and trying to avoid the fine drifting spores. 3 to 4 of the Drow were effected by the attack, they pulled their black scarf-like veils over their mouths and tried to move away from the attack.

Augustine remained focused, as the Drow backed away from the mushroom like growths, Augustine simply called for more to grow. A yellow carpet of puffy blobs was following the movements of the Drow.

"Use your weapons, kill the druid!" One of the unaffected Drow barked.

This same Drow began to murmur quietly, he held a hand out towards the rapidly approaching yellow wave of fungus. Pulling some black sheer fabric over his mouth he completed the spell.

The mushrooms nearest him were now turning black and decaying almost as fast as they were growing. The Drow male smiled in delight at what he saw. He pulled several daggers from his belt and flung them at the Pharie.

"Surely my name would be carved on walls like these if I destroyed you outlander." He hissed.

"Our goddess favors those that destroy the enemies of Underdark, and to destroy a Deithirin trespasser would no doubt draw her eyes to me!" The two daggers were in the air now, he swiftly palmed two more and was preparing to let them fly.

One other Drow also had avoided breathing the sickening dust, he stayed near the other who had thrown the daggers. This warrior carried one of the crossbows, he fired again at Jin and Augustine.

The four others were on their knees, they clawed at their eyes and coughed and gagged as the dust blinded and choked them. One of the affected fell to his side, he seemed to be suffocating. He struggled for air letting his daggers fall from his hands, within seconds he gasped and fell still.


Last edited by SubBear on Thu Dec 17, 2009 1:36 pm; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Re: 2: ACROSS THE PLAINS OF AZANULBIZAR   Thu Dec 17, 2009 1:21 pm



As the spores from the noxious mushroom belched forth and drifted to the mouth and nose of the Drow warriors, Jin wanted to pat Augustine on the back but now wasn’t the time. Besides, they weren’t out of the woods yet, so to speak. And when she heard the hissed words form one of the warriors, she knew the victory was short lived. Still, enough of them had been affected by the burst of fungi which made the odds a little more even then.

Knowing Tiphereth would have things well in hand on his end, Jin was able to concentrate on the threat that zeroed in on her and Augustine. As soon as she saw the cross bow raised to fire, Jin quickly cast a spell of her own that opened up a portal to Goddess knew where that swallowed the well aimed bolts then disappeared form view. As soon as she cast her spell her own cross bow was raised and a sleek, black bolt was sent in the direction of the Drow warrior that had fired at her and Augustine.

Jin’s voice reached across the expanse and raised over the commotion then, letting the warrior know he was counting his chickens before the eggs were even laid.

”She would never stoop to your level. Her eyes favor females who are proven strong enough to be leaders, not followers! And you are following the wrong leader so you are nothing more than a steaming pile of dung in her eyes. You are a lowly male. The only thing she would do with you is feed you to her pet.”

As she spoke, Jin reached a gloved hand beneath her cloak and pulled two daggers of her own and sent them flying towards the warrior with a flick of her hand. Her back was still to Augustine and she called to the Druid over her shoulder once more.

”I cannot wait to hear the story of how you two got down here. Was there no better way for you to travel than through this lovely patch of Underdark?”

While things were very serious there was no doubt of the slight humorous tone in her voice. Those red, glowing eyes of Jin’s darted around assessing the threat once more. There were more. While she couldn’t say for certain, something in her gut told her this was nothing but a smoke screen. And knowing Verin, these warriors were feelers on a much larger threat. Exactly what, though, remained to be seen.

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PostSubject: Re: 2: ACROSS THE PLAINS OF AZANULBIZAR   Fri Dec 18, 2009 1:09 am



The Drow was an experienced warrior and granted he had a talent with throwing knives but his abilities did not enter the realm of the mystical. 'A pity', Tiphereth thought to himself as he turned sideways, slipping in between the paths of the deadly daggers. For a split second he was a blur, then even as the Drow was preparing to throw two more knives while he spewed his grandiose scheme, Sorrelwind was upon him.

The Phaerie glided across the floor his movements difficult for the Drow's eyes to track. His golden orange hair danced like a flickering flame as he side stepped, ducked and rose bringing his empty palm from the floor to rest upon the Dark Elf's chest and there it rested for a split second. Then before the Drow could even consider a counter move he was struck by a powerful force following in the wake of the strike. A surge of mystical energy flowed through the Elf, throwing him into the air and backwards toward the other remaining, crossbowman.

The Phaerie had not intended it, but as the Drow sailed through the air he crossed into the path between Jin and her target. The Dark Elf stiffened as Jin's daggers sunk into his back and he continued to fly through the air to land just to the right of Augustine. The remaining Drow then, believing his Goddess did indeed favour him reached for a throwing knife even before his brother hit the ground. Reaching back he targeted the druid and let loose his poisoned blade as Jin called to him over her shoulder.

Moving along with his opponent, Sorrelwind saw too late the unfortunate sequence of events and though he was closing in on the crossbowman there was no way he could prevent the Drow from hurling his dagger. There was no time to yell a warning but even as it left his hand, Sorrelwind planned to wrestle the Dark Elf to the floor using his spear to entangle and bar his arms while slipping a hand around his throat. He had intended to keep this one alive for questioning but those intentions would be dictated by the outcome of the dagger that spun toward the druid and of course the fighting prowess of his opponent.

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PostSubject: Re: 2: ACROSS THE PLAINS OF AZANULBIZAR   Fri Dec 18, 2009 7:45 am

Lac turned when he heard the voice say
”Ho travelers! Might there be room for one more in your troupe? I wish to pass through Fangor but to do so alone is…well….not advisable. Don’t you agree?”
He looked into the blue eys and said "Yorestasay In astrigulraeevest, tiroth torrayartavalkestalon taehinrinonuthaeglinhiem Fayarnelgalosrel allirolnaretha cirualnor brinev tayor sorethator yidothuthrel fayestaethtae unepalothnay an hamarzorzunarthareldelosuthusat pernarttaeham. Perlorestarthasiletha jarlosimnay uthaesar infar yirothuth wisistasilhil." TRANSLATION: Yes I agree, to travel through Fangor alone can be to set your feet upon a hazzardous path. Plese join us if you wish)
He then brough the fist of his right hand to his heart and bowed his head slightly " I am Lac'Nala of Oron_D_Naar." He then gestured towards Othagren and Brianna "My companions are Othagren of the House Of Ironfist and Brianna of Rohan. We journey to Eastern Gates of Wellinghall where we pray to join others of our party. Then to my home in Oron_D_Naar."

Lac sensed something of the new arrival, something familiar yet not familiar was behind those eyes.
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PostSubject: Re: 2: ACROSS THE PLAINS OF AZANULBIZAR   Fri Dec 18, 2009 9:29 am



Tiphereth moved with the grace of the wind and with the difficulty it posed in not being able to see him as well as the others, he had a clear advantage over everyone. Of course with the fire burning brightly in the fire pit his advantage was cut slightly smaller than when it was pitch black. Still, his ability to bend time and movement brought a new dimension of fighting to the Drow warriors they had never had to encounter before and Jin took satisfaction in knowing they weren’t the only ones with the advantage here.

Of course her satisfaction was short lived when Jin saw the warrior who had been touting his own good luck flick his hand and let loose another deadly blade. There was no time to plan, only react and the only way she could see to prevent the dagger from reaching its mark was to stop it before it reached it.

With some quickly whispered words in the clipped language of the Drow, Jin raised her hand directly in the path of the dagger. As the blade flew into her hand it made the sound of metal striking metal before it fell harmlessly to the ground. Words slipped past her lip once more and her hand turned back into a fleshy appendage with flexible fingers and all. Turing to Augustine then, she spoke again.

”We need to get you out of here, my friend. And quickly. It is the only way I know you will be safe from his murdering followers and out of his reach.”

There was no reason to explain who Jin was referring to. It was obvious who the warriors worked for. Even if he wasn’t with them, his reach was growing wider and farther by the day. It was the advantage he had after aligning himself with the Dark Lord. Looking around as Tiphereth kept the others busy, Jin’s eyes drifted upwards then before she settled her red eyes on Augustine once more.

”Augustine? Do you think you could call upon some plants that could aid you in escaping through the vent for the fire pit?”

Turning to face the warriors, what was left of them, once more, she pulled a whip from under her cloak, she uncoiled the wicked looking length that had several sharp, silver tips on the end of it making the tip of the whip look like the head of a hydra. Moving closer to the males, she pulled the whip back then flicked it forward just as the male Drow was getting ready to throw another dagger. The sliver tips dug painfully into his skin as she yanked the whip hard back towards her causing the male to stumble forward and lose his footing.

”Hurts, does it not?”

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PostSubject: Re: 2: ACROSS THE PLAINS OF AZANULBIZAR   Fri Dec 18, 2009 9:45 am



Jalisa recognized Lac’s language. It had been quite sometime since she had heard it. It always sounded so musical to her ears. When Lac placed his fist over his heart then bowed his head slightly and introduced his companions, Jalisa studied them closely as she slowly approached. The Dwarf was obvious but when Brianna was introduced as being from Rohan, the brow over Jalisa’s left eye rose in curiosity.

Placing her right fist over her heart in kind and bowing her head in respect, she introduced herself and spoke to all of them in turn, using Lac’s language to speak to him before reverting to the common language for the other two.

”Well met, Lac’Nala of Oron_D_Naar.”

There was something in the way she looked at the Ranger that told him she knew far more about him than he realized. Before he could say anything, she turned to the others.

”Well met, Othargren of the House of Ironfist it is my pleasure to meet your acquaintance, master of the Iron. Well met, Brianna of Rohan it is my pleasure to meet you Lady of the Horse Whisperers. Although I must admit, I don’t ever recall seeing a dark haired Rohanian before. I’m sure the story behind your roots must be an interesting one indeed.”

When her eyes met Brianna’s there was nothing but respect and appreciation in her gaze for if anyone knew what it was like to be taken in by another, it was Jalisa.

”I am Jalisa and I have traveled a great distance already but when I reached the Fangor, I thought I had best wait until some other travelers come along. If at all. Thankfully, you three came to my rescue. For that, I am eternally grateful.”

Her eyes drifted to Lac then and she gave a nod but there was something in her gaze that told him there was more she wished to discuss, just not right now and in mixed company.

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PostSubject: Re: 2: ACROSS THE PLAINS OF AZANULBIZAR   Fri Dec 18, 2009 10:05 am



To the west the dark spires of the Misty Mountains rose above the tallest tree tops of Fangorn forest, their black silhouettes set apart from the deep blue of the night sky. The storms had passed and the silvery moon filtered through the thick canopy above. The remnants of the rain, the sparkling drops that clung to the leaves mimicking the starry sky.

Through a break in the trees a pale plum of smoke was contrasted by the black mountains, and the minute wisp of cloud was detected by the adventurers keen eyes.

After addressing the newcomer, Orthagren turned to Lac and addressed the smoke in the distance.

"Ye spoke of me kin dwelling beneath those mountains long ago, master ranger." Said the Dwarf as he stared out into the night sky, "And if I did not know better, I would say that hot smoke rose from a Dwarven chimney, a great brazier we use to heat our halls."

The Dwarf could not be more accurate. The smoke that rose from great fire pit that illuminated the scene of the battle below had found its way to the surface. From it, their companions would be able to mark their position, but they remained unaware of the perils they faced.

_________________________________________




Tiphereth was pleased to see that Jin was able to deflect the daggers course and immediately turned his full attention to the Drow beneath him. He was strong for his size, but not enough so that he was able to out muscle the Deithir whose strength far surpassed his already powerful frame. Created in the image of the messengers of the gods his people had many advantages, and his natural strength was one of them. His power alone, however, would not allow him to successfully grapple the wily Drow, for that he depended upon his training.

Hooking the Drow's arms round his spear in one smooth motion, he countered the Elf's attempts to free himself with quick well placed blocks. He then reached round and grabbed his throat with his free hand, squeezing just enough to force him into submission while he lifted him off the ground, using his spear as a rack.

The Phaerie carried the Drow over to where Jin tortured one of his brothers. "Speak." he demanded, "Tell us how many you are and where they plan to strike against us?"
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